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EU ruling could end all motorsport

sidecar racing

Published on 11 January 2017 by Robert Drane

The government is considering an EU ruling which could trigger the end of motorsport.

Known as the ‘Vnuk judgement’, all motorised transport would require third-party damage and injury insurance if implemented. The Motorcycle Industry Association (MCIA), Amateur Motor Cycle Association (AMCA) and Auto-Cycle Union (ACU) believe that motorsports are uninsurable and that this ruling could see the end to them all.

Steve Kenward, CEO of the MCIA, said:

"If the government implements the Vnuk judgment un-amended, British motorcycle sport would end in the UK. Given that we are coming out of the EU, we are astonished that the government is even considering an option to implement Vnuk."

 

Challenging issues

The government doesn’t have much choice about implementing it or not. The ruling is the result of a European Court case involving Damijan Vnuk, a Slovenian worker who fell from a ladder which was struck by a tractor. As the European Court is the highest court in the EU, the result of the case has meant that all vehicles now require third-party insurance.

The government also appears to be of the opinion that implementing the ruling could be disastrous. In the consultation’s foreword, Transport Minister Andrew Jones states that the Department for Transport has “serious misgivings about the extent to which the Vnuk judgment has broadened the scope of the Directive…the judgment has generated some potentially costly consequences and some quite challenging issues”

 

£11 billion, 50,000 people

The British motorsport industry generates £11 billion of sales every year and employs more than 50,000 people.

Steve Kenward said: “At a stroke, this would wipe out a successful industry and all the jobs that go with it, as well as eliminating a popular leisure pursuit for 1.9 million people, along with the boost that this gives to both local and national economies”.

For more details or to respond to the consultation, visit gov.uk. The consultation closes on March 31.

The full and official BMF response will be available soon.